Team mentality is a key aspect of athletic success.
When Neil Case joined the Binghamton Track & Field team as a freshman in the fall of 2001, he anticipated building a strong bond with his teammates. He did not know the way the mindset he would learn would become a defining characteristic of his future endeavors both professionally and personally.
When he first visited Binghamton University as a senior at Mount Markham High School, Case was excited about what the school had to offer. The opportunity to be a part of the track & field team further solidified his decision.
Neil Case had a stellar running career, becoming captain of the team and winning the 400 hurdles at the 2005 America East Outdoor Track & Field Championship, setting a school record in the process. Despite any individual titles, however, the team mentality was his favorite part of his time as a Bearcat.
"Track & field is mostly an individual sport," Case said. "However, looking back on my career there what I most remember was the team mentality and how close of a team we were."
Case, who lives in West Winfield with his wife and their six children, was inducted into the Mount Markham Hall of Fame last June. He is with the New York State Police- Special Operations Underwater Recovery Team.
During his time on the team, Case formed a close bond with two teammates in particular - Mike Stewart and Hasani Hampden. Stewart, Hampden, and Case all ran the 400 hurdles and often raced against each other.
Over the course of their time at Binghamton, they became best friends and even lived together. "We had friendly competition the entire time between the three of us," Case said. "Living together made us all better because we were all able to keep each other focused when it came time to practice."
The trio dominated the America East conference, with Stewart winning the conference title and setting a Binghamton University record in 2004, a year before Case would accomplish the same feat.
The following year, Hampden set a school record at the conference meet. Their…